2015 so far has been an exciting year for Australian organizations. Many new initiatives have been kicked-off and some are in the pipeline ready to get started. Based on my industry observations and client interactions so far in 2015, following seem to be the hot trends for rest of 2015. Please note that the trends are not in the priority order as that may vary for every organization.
1.DevOps – Continuous Delivery & Continuous Integration
Organizations like CBA, Westpac, Auspost, NAB and Telstra are working towards increased collaboration between Development & Operations through DevOps for Continuous Delivery & Continuous Integration. Idea is to have more frequent releases than the traditional quarterly releases. 2015 will see the organizations formalizing DevOps mandate for front-end customer facing applications and trying DevOps into their core applications as well. As per a recent industry survey by Rackspace, 50% of Australian organizations said they had already implemented DevOps, with another 36% saying they planned to do so. 72% of businesses without a current DevOps strategy plan to implement one by the end of 2017.
2.Big Data & Advanced Analytics
Big Data has been more of a strategy discussion and executing some POCs, for most Australian organizations so far. 2015 is changing that. There is an increased interest from customers to explore Hadoop driven big data especially for use cases around customer churn, fraud, cross-sell and up-sell. Marketing teams will drive a lot of spend in these areas to deliver customized products & services to the end customer. Telstra recently deployed a hadoop based predictive analytics system that uses its operational data to help identify network issues before they occur.
Cloud adoption will get stronger in 2015. With Microsoft’s recent announcement of launching a data centre down under more and more international cloud solution providers will establish a local presence thus alleviating concerns on data moving offshore. Most large organizations will work towards finding a balance between hybrid cloud and public cloud model. This year will also see organizations comparing and analyzing what will work for them on cloud and what will not and why? Enterprise IT teams will drive a lot of cloud initiatives and for a start cloud solutions will be built to solve specific business problems.
4.Payments & Mobile Payments
With NPP development in full swing, 2015 will see Banks to increase spend in Payments especially on gap analysis and NPP readiness assessment. NFC based mobile wallets will start to become mainstream in Australia. Westpac predicts three million people will make an average of five contactless mobile payments per month in 2015 – resulting in an industry worth $3 billion. Big 4 banks will lead the charge but it will be interesting to see how Coles shapes up its mobile payments strategy.
5.Opening up APIs
Globally many organizations are Opening up their APIs so they can be accessed by a variety of software developers to develop customized applications. Organizations down under are slowly doing it and in 2015 many large organizations are expected to open up their APIs. In Australia’s neighbor New Zealand, ASB Bank released a public-facing API framework and portal for external developers. CBA is allowing developers to develop apps for Albert. Telstra has also taken a small step in this direction with SMS API.
6.Deeper Relationships with less partners
This trend will continue to get focus from large organizations. There will be a big push to move away from T&M Model and this will result in SLA Driven outcome based engagements in areas which were not open for partnering earlier. Organizations will further deepen relationships with their tech partners and there will be partner consolidation. Partners will also be pushed by clients for end to end accountability led by Opex-based solutions or BPaaS based models with more skin in the game and end to end responsibility. As per NAB CIO David Boyle at CeBIT “If you are still asking for upfront licenses, rather than having an ‘as-a-service’ offering for your software platform, then it’s no longer relevant. We are not going to buy technology that way anymore”
7.Next leap in tech innovation for Digital Success
Innovation in digital will become priority for large and some medium-sized organizations in 2015. Driving factors for some of them will be delays in launching digital initiatives, ever changing role of players like Apple, Google (e.g. Apple may pose watch companies a serious danger with Apple Watch) and growing frustration from consumers in coming up with something new or different. Digital will be the key driving factor here. As per a Deloitte report (commissioned by Google Australia) “Australia’s digital economy will contribute $79 billion or 5.1% of gross domestic product this year”. This may reach $139 billion or 7.3% of GDP by 2020 as per the research forecast from the report. Some organizations will create an investment fund to invest in start-ups working on path-breaking technologies/products.
8.Rise of Virtual Workplaces
Workplaces are changing rapidly across the world and in Australia as well. 2015 will take it further with more employees working from various locations, hot desks or remotely from home. Australian organization will formally start defining their workplace technology strategy for future in terms of BYOD, smart locations, virtual desktops, video conferencing etc. Driving productivity, more time with customer and home-like technology will be key drivers behind this.
Wearable technology is growing fast with focus on fashion, fitness devices and health related benefits. People in Australia are buying Fitbits and similar devices more and more and with Apple Watch on the way there will be a huge push towards wearables. However market has been more individual dependent but 2015 will make enterprises think how they can integrate wearables into their strategies and what applications can be built around them.
About the Blogger
Mayank Sharma is part of TechM’s BFSI Client Relationship team for strategic accounts. He has been involved in providing business & technology driven solutions to various BFSI customers for the last 12 years.